An Introduction to Sport

Any definition of sport can be controversial. Activities involved in sport for the sole purpose of recreation, health and fitness or purely for fun, with little or no emphasis on competitive action or physical exertion. As the name would suggest, the word’sport’ is derived from the verb ‘to play’. The term was used in English by the Romans to describe any games that were played for recreation, such as hunting, wrestling, handball and polo. However, over time the word has developed a much wider meaning, which includes any competitive action undertaken for the benefit of the participants, and usually involving the use of physical strength, agility, skill and athleticism.


Today, the term sport is most commonly associated with professional competitive sporting activities, such as ice-breaking international tournaments and World Cups, football competitions, basketball, hockey and other competitive athletics, and even swimming. In its modern incarnation, the term Sport refers to any physical activity that requires the application of physical strength, skill and speed, for the accomplishment of some objective. It can also be used in contexts describing actions considered to be recreational or for the development of personal qualities of endurance, alertness, skill, reaction time and physical endurance. Professional sport is generally defined as the participation in competitive gaming, sports competition, military or police forces, or other forms of competitive athletics.

Athletes engaged in these competitions are judged based on their performance in terms of skill, fitness, stamina, agility, suppleness, body composition, power, and consistency. Competitors can also be assessed on the basis of sporting competition in various different disciplines, including gymnastics, motor racing, rugby, sailing, hockey, swimming, track and field and boxing. The results of sporting events are compiled and published annually in various different newspapers and magazines, to ensure that the level of participation in such events is consistent each year. As previously mentioned, any athlete or sport enthusiast who wishes to pursue a career in one of the numerous sports activities is required to pass both an athletic and psychological test, in order to prove his or her competencies.